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Treatment

 
Treatment

Chapter: 6 - Treatment

Subchapter: 1 - Introduction

Treatment Introduction
In recent years, due to earlier detection and more effective treatments, many women diagnosed with breast cancer overcome the disease and go on to live healthy lives.

Treatment Options Recommended By Your Health Care Provider
It’s important to understand the different types of treatment options available to you, because you are an integral part of your decision-making team. Your medical team will advocate certain treatments, but they will also seek your input.

They will recommend a plan based on:
- Stage of cancer and whether or not it has spread
- Type of cancer, and status of the estrogen, progesterone, or HER2/neu receptors found in the cancer cells
- Your age, health, and menstrual/menopausal stage
- And whether or not this is your first cancer treatment

In general, there are five treatment options, and most treatment plans include a combination of the following:
1) Surgery
2) Radiation
3) Hormone Therapy
4) Chemotherapy
5) Targeted Therapies

Some are local, targeting just the area around the tumor with surgery or radiation. Others are systemic, targeting your whole body with cancer-fighting agents such as chemotherapy.

Most women receive a combination of treatments, but each case is unique, and your medical team will work to find the most effective treatment for you.

Getting A Second Opinion
Even so, you may find yourself second-guessing their recommendations or suggested treatment plan. If you’re hesitant for any reason, you should get the opinion of another doctor before beginning treatment. Your doctor will not mind if you want a second opinion; some insurance plans even require it.

Again, don’t hesitate to ask your medical team questions. When it comes to getting a second opinion, you are your own best advocate.

Related Questions

  • Thumb avatar default

    What does it mean when a triple negative tumor grows during chemo? Besides surgery, what are the options?

    Asked by anonymous

    Stage 2B Patient
    almost 6 years 4 answers
    • View all 4 answers
    • julie s Profile
      anonymous
      Stage 2A Patient

      Im TN too. With mastectomy and no node involvement as long as they got clear margins next step might be radiation, but depends on what path report says and what oncologist recommends. Keep us posted!

      Comment
    • Thumb avatar default
      anonymous
      Patient

      What chemo are you on and how many treatments have you had? I had chemo, then surgery and next week I start radiation. I'm tnbc too and I always thought that this kind of breast cancer responded really well to chemo. You came to the right place to ask questions. These women are amazing and...

      more

      What chemo are you on and how many treatments have you had? I had chemo, then surgery and next week I start radiation. I'm tnbc too and I always thought that this kind of breast cancer responded really well to chemo. You came to the right place to ask questions. These women are amazing and really help each other.

      2 comments
  • karen sammons Profile

    My sister was diagnosed with ductal breast cancer stage 0 had lumpectomy with close margins receiving 36 tx radiations will start tomoxifen afterwards

    Asked by anonymous

    Learning About Breast Cancer
    over 6 years 2 answers
    • Evelyn Heilbrunn Profile
      anonymous
      Survivor since 2012

      Thank God they found it early. She's probably having the rads because of the margins. I had close margins and had 3 re-resections to get clean ones, but still had 8 weeks of radiation. There are plenty of creams, both over the counter and prescription, to help with burns if she gets any. ...

      more

      Thank God they found it early. She's probably having the rads because of the margins. I had close margins and had 3 re-resections to get clean ones, but still had 8 weeks of radiation. There are plenty of creams, both over the counter and prescription, to help with burns if she gets any. She'll do great with your love and support!

      Comment
    • Marianne R. Profile
      anonymous
      Survivor since 2011

      God bless your sister on her journey. She is lucky to have you in her life. Caring for the skin is one of the important part of rads. The least expensive is aqua phor and aloe. Utterly smooth works for some people. I ended up using products from Lindiskin. They are not cheap but I think it is...

      more

      God bless your sister on her journey. She is lucky to have you in her life. Caring for the skin is one of the important part of rads. The least expensive is aqua phor and aloe. Utterly smooth works for some people. I ended up using products from Lindiskin. They are not cheap but I think it is worth it. I didn't have to take any days off due to skin issues.

      1 comment
  • Thumb avatar default

    Do I need to be worried about germs as much on radiation as someone on chemo?

    Asked by anonymous

    Learning About Breast Cancer
    about 6 years 4 answers
    • View all 4 answers
    • Jessica Murphy Profile
      anonymous
      Learning About Breast Cancer

      Not so much about germs, but definitely pay attention to the health of your skin and your exposure to the sun. Lindi Skin is a great line that can offer the much needed hydration and also some cooling relief. Invest in a good quality sunscreen, too.

      Comment
    • Marianne R. Profile
      anonymous
      Survivor since 2011

      My rads onc took blood every two weeks to watch my blood count. Unless they say something I think you are OK. Skin is the big deal with rads and fatigue.

      Comment
  • Thumb avatar default

    After chemo my muscles are sore and my joints are tight. What can I do?

    Asked by anonymous

    Learning About Breast Cancer
    over 6 years 7 answers
    • View all 7 answers
    • Kathy M Profile
      anonymous
      Learning About Breast Cancer

      I have a similar issue and I started accupuncture which has been helpful but asked your doctor first

      Comment
    • Diana Foster Payne Profile
      anonymous
      Stage 4 Patient

      What chemo cocktail are you on? I know muscle aches can be a side effect of Taxol. Also the Neulasta shot given during chemo can cause body aches.

      Comment

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